98th Annual Meeting DOG 2000

P 402

Amniotic membrane transplantation in murine HSV-1 keratitis: Improved healing and reduced expression of inflammatory cytokines.

A. Heiligenhaus1,2, S. Wasmuth1, D. Bauer1, K. P. Steuhl1

Introduction: We have recently shown that amniotic membrane transplantation (AMT) improves the healing of epithelial defects and stromal inflammation in mice with necrotizing HSV-1 keratitis (HSK). This study was done to determine the effect of AMT on the expression of inflammatory cytokines in the HSV-1 infected cornea.

Methods: BALB/c mice were chosen that had developed severe ulcerating HSK after corneal infection with HSV-1 (KOS strain). One group of mice received an AM as a patch, another group of mice served as untreated controls. On day 2 after AMT, mice were clinically examined for the signs of HSV-keratitis; the eyes were enucleated and were histologically analyzed. In the corneas, the cytokine expression of interleukin (IL)-1, IL-2, interferon (IFN)-g , IL-4, IL-10 und tumor nekrosis factor (TNF)-a was determined by ELISA, and the cytokine mRNA-concentrations were investigated by semiquantitative RT-PCR.

Results: The AMT treated animals clinically and histologically showed an improved healing of the epithelial effects and stromal inflammation. This correlated with reduced mRAM-levels and secretion of IL-1, IL-2, IFN-g and TNF-a .

Conclusions: The results indicate that AMT reduces the production of inflammatory cytokines in the HSV-1 infected cornea. Transplantation of human amniotic membrane may be useful to improve the healing of necrotizing HSV-1 keratitis.

Supported by DFG grant He 1877/7-1
Department of Ophthalmology, University of Essen, Hufelandstrasse 55, 45122 Essen, Germany
2Department of Ophthalmology, St. Franziskus Hospital, Hohenzollernring 72-74, 48155 Muenster